Former Manchester United defender Nemanja Vidic has snubbed Fernando Torres from his list of the four best Premier League strikers he faced in his career.
Torres infamously terrorised Vidic in numerous meetings between Liverpool and Manchester United, but the defender failed to mention him when discussing the strikers who troubled him the most.
Perhaps surprisingly, Vidic named former Liverpool and Tottenham hit-man Peter Crouch as one of his most feared opponents.
Chelsea legend Didier Drogba, Manchester City’s record goalscorer Sergio Aguero and Atletico Madrid’s Luis Suarez completed Vidic’s list.
But it was Crouch who presented Vidic with an unusual challenge in their meetings.
"My first experience was Peter Crouch. I'd never seen a two-metres tall player before', Vidic told The Athletic.
"He played for Liverpool and we played them in a cup game at Anfield. I was thinking 'Wow, what can I do today with this guy?'
"Then I saw Bellamy next to him, not a great player on the ball but very, very fast. He would run into space, Crouch would jump into the air. I'd never seen football played like this.
"I'd never had a No 9 and a sharp, fast, player next to him. I knew how to deal with them individually but not both of them at the same time. I played alongside Wes Brown, it was a tough game, a long game. We lost 1-0."
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Vidic also had praise for Drogba, despite the former Chelsea man being sent off in the 2008 Champions League final for slapping him.
“He was a very clever player who would get into the brain of the defenders,” Vidic said.
“He was strong, but he was always thinking ahead. He used his strength well, he was really good in the box at Stamford Bridge, a close, tight stadium.
“Drogba was on you for the full game. Drogba would be even better if he didn’t get so many injuries. He was always around the box and very difficult to stop from scoring.
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“He scored so many important goals, he was very consistent. I played against him when we were both at the peak of our careers.”
It was not until his final years at Old Trafford that Vidic came up against Aguero, but the Serbian described how the Manchester City man was responsible for his worst game for the Red Devils.
"I played against Aguero when they beat us 4-1 in the Moyes season," Vidic said.
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"He (Aguero) looks like he's not interested in football on the pitch. He doesn't look like a guy who will run 10 metres and then – bang – he makes the sprint.
“I'm convinced that Aguero was born as a defender. He knows where the ball will come and where he can attack. That was my worst game for United.”
Aguero’s fellow South American Suarez also drew praise from Vidic, who highlighted the former Liverpool man’s tireless running.
"He’s an energetic player. He’s different from Aguero who doesn’t run for 90 minutes; he’s a player who uses instinct. Everything is done in bursts," Vidic added.
"I don't think he knows exactly what he's doing but he succeeds. He's very direct and hungry to score. He runs for 90 minutes, he has a fire in him."
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